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Life in the Raw
A Miracle in my Yard

with Melissa Gilbert

My family lives out in the middle of the desert, and we are blessed with a natural Aloe Vera farm right in our front yard. We drink from this wonderful miracle plant every single day. It makes me feel really good to be able to go out into the yard and pick 'health' for my family to consume.

We have been drinking fresh Aloe Vera juice daily for three months. During this time my skin has become very soft, silky and wonderfully hydrated. After being out in the hot southern Arizona sunshine for a long time, it had become dry and painful. Yes, I eat a raw diet and drink plenty of pure water, but the intense heat and direct sunshine was too much for my skin. (Remember we were living without walls, camping out in these elements.) I am quite pleased with the transformation my skin has undergone just by placing the goodness of the Aloe Vera plant into my body. In fact, I noticed a substantial change in my body and skin in just two or three days of drinking fresh Aloe juice. I have begun using the gel as a natural lotion for my hands and face before bed, and I feel as if I have undergone a face lift. Alex, David and I crave it each day now, and it has become a routine in our lives just like Green Smoothies have been for my guys. I'm not so sure if I want to leave Arizona for the simple reason that I would not have this 'Farm of Health' in my yard anymore.

I pick three long thick stalks for the three of us, and cut off the sharp edges with my kitchen sheers. I cut the stalk down the middle lengthwise, so that I have two long pieces. Then I lay one side down on my cutting board (gel side up, because that is what you want), take a spoon and scrape the inside gel from the aloe stalk, and place it all into my Vita Mix. I fill my blender with pure water and about two cups of ice. I blend on high until all is blended. (It does not take long; less is best when blending aloe gel). It comes out as a beautiful, light green juice that is cool, refreshing, and wonderfully delicious. The taste is light and smooth, and just a tad bit green. Nothing at all like the stuff you buy in the store, which tastes bitter, (in fact it is disgusting!). Fresh Aloe Vera Juice is fun to drink, especially knowing what I do about it.

Aloe Vera is a succulent cactus-like plant that is actually a member of the Lily family. It is also a native plant of northern Africa. Many native tribes have used this plant for its healing abilities and still do today. Ancient Egyptians and Greeks used Aloe for healing wounds over 3500 years ago.

Who would not love to drink from a plant that heals itself when it is cut or injured? Think about it, how could a plant such as this react inside of your body? Healing from the inside out—that's not at all bad! Upon doing my research for this article, I have uncovered many miraculous things about the Aloe Vera plant and all of its health benefits. Perhaps this information will amaze you as much as it amazed me!

As most of you already know, Aloe Vera heals cuts and scrapes when you place the gel on the outside of your body. You can actually get rid of all those costly ointments and sprays in your medicine cabinet by using Aloe Vera alone. For example, if you have a wound that requires stitches, applying gel from the Aloe Vera plant on the affected area will help reduce scaring that may occur from the injury. The same is true for any scars that you may already have on your body.

By drinking the juice from the gel of the Aloe Vera plant, you will notice that it boosts the oxygenation in your blood stream, making it flow more efficiently and carrying nutrients through your body more effectively. Most people's blood cells are clumped together because of the processed foods they eat. You may not eat from a box all the time, but if you cook your food you are processing it all on your own.

Aloe Vera:

  • lowers high cholesterol. As a matter of fact, cholesterol will not form in the body if you drink fresh Aloe juice each day. Along with having a healthier diet, you will be in great shape.
  • alkalizes your body.
  • supports healing and your well-being. This is because the gel from the Aloe plant contains compounds such as mannana, lectins and anthraquinones.
  • hydrates your body, making your skin smooth and silky. This also helps your organs to work at their optimal efficiency.
  • repairs the body from radiation burns and scaring inside the body from cancer treatments.
  • heals physical burns on your body from the inside out. This works when you take it both internally and when you apply it externally.
  • cures symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome (IBS). This is provided that you follow a regular practice of drinking fresh Aloe Vera juice daily.
  • diminishes stomach ulcers and other digestive disorders.
  • helps put an end to constipation and supports your bowels to work properly.
  • stabilizes blood sugar levels.
  • can inhibit the growth of bad bacteria.
  • will halt the spread of colon cancer. There are ongoing scientific studies showing that the daily use of Aloe Vera will slow the growth of many cancerous tumors, thus adding precious time and longevity to a cancer patient's lifespan.
  • lubricates the digestive tract. This means 'that time of the day' will be less of a struggle in some situations.
  • stops inflammation within the body. This only works if you stop eating inflammatory foods such as dairy products, red meat, sugar (all white food products) and processed foods.
  • relieves joint and muscle pain. This is a great thing for those who suffer from arthritis and fibromyalgia.
  • is an antioxidant and a natural immune booster.
  • helps heal gum disease. Just chew on the gel of the aloe for a few minutes each day.
  • is a natural 'Sports Drink' filled with electrolytes, minerals, vitamins and enzymes.

Aloe is a true miracle within the plant world, if you ask me!

Aloe Vera amplifies the effects of vitamins. Because it aids all things we feed our body, everything is much more nutritious for us. This is perhaps due to Aloe's ability to increase blood flow and oxygenate the blood better, therefore carrying nutrients throughout our body much more effectively. Research on this is being done now.

I find that a lot of people read things and then try them for a few days or even a week. However, as in many cases, this will not cure you or make your body one of health. You need to practice good health all the time, not just occasionally. With regular juicing of Aloe Vera, you will notice improvement in your health in many cases in just a few days. However, you also need to 'stick to it' for long term effects on your body. Use it, and use it daily. Get healthy, be pain free! Incorporate healthier raw fruits, vegetables, seeds and nuts along with fresh juices to your diet each day. Add Aloe Vera gel to your juicing regime. You can add it to any freshly made juices and even smoothies. Soon you will become a happy, healthy, joyful, peaceful, drug-free person, and live life as such. You will beam light. I guarantee it!

Where can you get the fresh stalks of the Aloe Vera plant? Aloe Vera is a succulent cactus-like plant the grows in the dryness of the desert. When it rains, the aloe expands in size as many other succulents do. It is quite fun to watch. Aloe does this to store water. People have begun to sell it on the web. I have seen it for as much as 48 dollars for twelve stalks of this miracle plant. This is a lot of money! However, it is easy to grow on your own. You can find it at chain stores like The Home Depot. Most garden centres carry it as well. Prices vary, so call around to check it out. Choose large plants with long thick stalks. It is a lot less expensive to grow your own. Buy a plant, bring it home, love it, and you will have your own potted 'Farm of Health' right on your porch or within your home.

Raw Love
Melissa Gilbert

You can read Melissa's interview in March 2008's issue of Timeless Spirit Magazine.

Melissa Gilbert is a Raw food Chef, a Certified Raw Food Nutritional Consultant, and a Raw Food Coach. She is also a Certified Personal Trainer and works with her client's nutritional goals as well as getting them established in an exercise regime.

Currently getting her Bachelor of Science in Holistic Nutrition and taking classes to become a Hygienic Doctor, she is mother to toddler Alex, and wife to David as well as mother to 2 grown children and 3 grandchildren.

In her spare time Melissa enjoys the great outdoors, mountain hiking, biking, snow shoeing, camping in the backwoods and sailing. A Shaman in training and Tarot card enthusiast, Melissa (and her family) practices Buddhism with Pagan influences. If you would like to learn more about Raw Foods you can reach Melissa via email or visit one of her websites: www.LoveRawLife.com, www.rawtoddleralex.blogspot.com, and www.rawmom.blogspot.com.

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